Sleep Disrupted by Crawling

Updated on June 03, 2009
C.P. asks from Santa Cruz, CA
8 answers

My 8 1/2 mo old boy is learning to crawl and it's become very difficult to put him to bed at night. I do the same routine I've always done (bath, pj's, books, bottle) I rock him on the yoga ball, sing to him then put him in the crib. He has Been acting sleepy but then wants to practice crawling once I put him in. He cries because he's tired and frustrated. So I end up picking him up and rocking him, and trying again. He rarely takes the pacifier now which used to be magic. Then he wakes up an hour later crying and needs to be soothed back to sleep.

Previously I used to do our routine and let him squirm to sleep in the crib. It was no problem! He has a bonding doll, white noise and I preheat the crib. This is driving me crazy! CIO doesn't work.

I think he's teething (top) but nothing has come through yet. The bottom teeth were very fast. I just don't know what to do.

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answers from Redding on

i have been going through exactly the same with my 7 mo. and he is starting to be a little better as he seems to be mastering crawling during the day. what i have found is that for me, i just have been accommodating him at this point because i know that this too shall pass. sounds like you will have no problem getting back into things once this phase is over. i have been continuing to put my boy down in his bed, but when he gets mad and its clear he is over it, i bring him to my bed where he sleeps better -- especially once i am in it. but i also know that i will keep putting him in his own so that i can let him be back on his own when he is ready.
for the teeth, hyland teething tablets do work, you just have to give them consistently.
from my experience with my first, sleep issues are not a battle, it is all just a transition. we get to choose if it will intense and frustrating or gradual, nurturing and time-consuming! know that it will all be different soon enough.



answers from San Francisco on

I don't like the idea of giving my baby pain killers or orajel this young, and if your problem is teething, my daughter finds that chewing on this while I hold her helps.
This has been her favorite teether, and after chewing on this for as long as she needs to, she was able to go to bed.
Good Luck!



answers from San Francisco on

Swaddle him. It worked for my daughter at that stage. wouldn't hurt to try. good luck



answers from Sacramento on

I'm not a fan of CIO as in a lot of cases it just doesn't work. Do you put him into his crib once he actually falls asleep or after you rock him do you put him in while he's still awake? If he's still awake, maybe you could put him to bed only once he's actually fallen asleep. Is he turning over in his sleep to crawl once you put him on his back? Maybe you could put nightime Baby Orajel on his gums for his teething in case that is keeping him awake and/or restless. He could just be restless because he's uncomfortable from teething. You could ask your doctor about baby motrin/tylenol before bedtime if he in fact is teething. Good luck!



answers from San Francisco on

Hi C.,

My daughter is crying in the other room as we speak so I went on here to try to research sleep. She too is impossible to get to bed at night (7:30) and now has learned to pull herself up on the crib and will stand there and cry. We have been doing a lot of singing while holding our hand on her to keep her lying down. It's completely wearing us both out. I feel your pain.

Tonight I put her in the swing to see if she will fall asleep in a way that is a little more restrictive (so far no luck though :-(

In any case, I have used Motrin with more success than Tylenol for teething pain. It may not help her fall asleep (as this probably has to do with her developmental phase) but it helps to keep her there.

I plan to keep checking your post for more suggestions as they come in...

In the meantime, perhaps I will try an earlier bedtime tomorrow.

Hang in there!



answers from Sacramento on

Sounds like it is time to change his routine. At 8 1/2 months old their sleep patterns are changing. Try moving his naps around and moving his bed time. All babies go through this and it is a phase, the key is to get through it. Your routine has a lot to it. Maybe there is so much to it you are missing the window when he wants to fall asleep because you are so focused on the routine. Bath, jammies, book, bottle, rock, sing etc. wow, that is a lot. I would suggest eliminating the singing to start with and combining the book with the rocking so when you are done with the book you can put him down. I would suggest Tylenol for the teething just in case and see if it helps. Good luck



answers from Sacramento on

Dear C.,

I understand your frastration but keep in mind all this will be in the past. It is normal for a child to get up in the middle of night to practice whatever new skill they try to master. My daughter did that when she was learning to sit, to crawl, to babble, to walk, to speak, to say a whole sentence...etc. It is a phase they go through. Once he masters it he will go back to himself.

Hang in there and wish you the best.



answers from San Francisco on

Hello C.,
What time do you put him to bed? Does he take 2 naps still? If I were you, I would try putting him to bed 1/2 hour early. My daughter didn't sleep through the night until she was 11 months old, and once I moved her bed time from 7:30 to 6:30 she started sleeping through the night. The past few nights my daughter wouldn't fall asleep until 1/2 hour after I put her to bed. Tonight I put her to bed 30 minutes early and she feel right to sleep. When they get over tired it's hard for them to fall asleep and stay asleep.
Best of luck!
PS. If you think it's teeth give him a little Tylenol or Motrin before bed.

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